Nuisance Cats

Within the City of Rushville and surrounding towns within Rush County is an epidemic of free roaming cats who have become a nuisance through unchecked breeding, vet care, and natural feline instincts.

Currently there are no ordinances within the City of Rushville that supports free roaming cats or feral colonies. All residents of the City of Rushville are expected to keep their cats on their property, have no more than 4 animals total, and are not permitted to become a nuisance to neighbors. With the exception of Carthage, there are no ordinances that address free roaming cats and their nuisance behaviors for surrounding towns within Rush County. Carthage has a cat colony management ordinance, please check with their town hall for more information.

Our challenge as a department of animal control within the City of Rushville is many of these free roaming cats are unclaimed, therefore we have no owner to speak to or write citations to. Our bigger challenge is, outside of Carthage, there are no ordinances that address free roaming cats for surrounding towns within Rush County, therefore there is no ordinance to enforce. Within Carthage, the Town Marshal is the one responsible for enforcing their cat colony management ordinances.

Here are our solutions we can offer, all trapped cats are subjected to our evaluation process and in most cases will be placed for adoption through our Barn Cat Program:

Free Roaming Cats Within the City of Rushville

  • You are able to identify the owner of the nuisance cat(s)
    • See Animal Control on your options for reporting
    • We will make an attempt to contact the owner, the first contact will result in a verbal warning and an offer of assistance to address the problem, any continued issues will result in a citation (be aware, you as the complainant may be asked to sign the citation if our Animal Control Officers are unable to witness the nuisance behavior)
    • You will have the option at all times to have us schedule a week to set Live Traps or you may borrow Live Traps from us at no charge on YOUR PROPERTY
    • You will have the option at all times to bring the nuisance cat(s) to us once they are on YOUR OR PUBLIC PROPERTY, see Stray Surrender for more information
  • You are unable to identify the owner of the nuisance cat(s)
    • See Animal Control on your options for reporting
    • You will have the option at all times to have us schedule a week to set Live Traps or you may borrow Live Traps from us at no charge on YOUR PROPERTY
    • You will have the option at all times to bring the nuisance cat(s) to us once they are on YOUR OR PUBLIC PROPERTY, see Stray Surrender for more information

Free Roaming Cats Outside the City of Rushville

  • See Animal Control on your options for reporting
  • You will have the option at all times to have us schedule a week to set Live Traps or you may borrow Live Traps from us at no charge on YOUR PROPERTY
  • You will have the option at all times to bring the nuisance cat(s) to us once they are on YOUR OR PUBLIC PROPERTY, see Stray Surrender for more information

LIVE TRAP SCHEDULING

  • As a service to Rush County residents we will set traps on YOUR PROPERTY or in some cases, if we are able to establish abandonment, they can be placed on abandoned property
  • This service is provided by appointment only
  • We will schedule a week to devote to setting traps, checking for caught animals, transporting caught animals, and retrieving traps when the week is finished or all cats have been caught
    • Traps are set and checked beginning Mondays and are removed on Fridays
    • If not all cats are caught by Friday afternoon and the schedule permits, we will return the following Monday to reset traps or inform you of another week we can return
    • Property owners have the option of keeping the traps set through Friday evening until Saturday morning, however, if an animal is caught the property owner will be responsible and will need to follow our Trap Borrowing rules

DO IT YOURSELF TRAPPING

  • Property owners are permitted to borrow or use their own and set Live Traps themselves on their own property or with permission of the property owner, however they will be expected to follow the Trap Borrowing rules

Trapping free roaming cats is not a end all solution, it is simply one piece of the solution to the problem of free roaming cats we are all frustrated with. Typically when free roaming cats are caught, another cat or group of cats will move into the area. The other pieces to the ultimate solution are:

  • Ordinances that can be and are enforced by the permitted authority figures
  • Cat owners fulfilling their responsibility as a pet owner to spay and neuter, vaccinate, illness treated, and prevention of their cats from becoming nuisances to their neighbors or surrender their cat(s) to us if they are unable to fulfill this responsibility
  • Cat feeders need to accept the responsibility as a pet owner if they choose to feed free roaming cats and have them spayed and neutered, vaccinated, illness treated, and prevention of the cats from becoming nuisances to their neighbors or surrender the cat(s) to us if they are unable to fulfill this responsibility
  • Residents affected by nuisance cats have the responsibility to speak up to their neighbor in a kind way, offer assistance if possible, speak to their city or county council on how to address the issue if ordinances are not already in place or not being enforced and/or report nuisance cats to us
  • Accessible and affordable spay, neuter, vaccinations, and preventative veterinarian care options, some options can be found here.
  • Just like nuisance wildlife, removing resources the nuisance cats can use on your property, such as food, water, and shelter, can diminish nuisance behavior